I work at the University of Vienna, having previously held research positions at the Central European University, Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies, and the University of Manchester. I trained as a historian and journalist in Poland and the United Kingdom. As part of my doctoral research I conducted 8-months fieldwork in the USA, working in the archives in New York, Chicago, Washington DC, and Minneapolis. I gained further experience in the archives sector while cataloging and conducting background research for the collection Photos of Nazi Perpetrators, Nazi Crime Complexes, Camps, Camp Prisoners and Concentration Camp Memorials, as well as indexing and translating Polish-, Italian-, and Russian-language correspondence of Simon Wiesenthal pertaining to his work of capturing Nazi war criminals, for the Vienna Wiesenthal Insitute for Holocaust Studies. 

In my academic work, I focus on the people's history of the postwar reconstruction and population displacement in the early Cold War. Currently I am working on a project on the Vatican’s involvement in post-World War II refugee assistance.

Academic work experience


Research Center for the History of Transformations, University of Vienna

MSCA Fellow

2022 - 2023

Central European University in Vienna

Postdoctoral Researcher (Project: Jewish Displaced Persons and the Vatican, 1945-1958)

2021  - 2022

Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies

Research Fellow (Project: ‘Recivilising’ Refugees. Displaced Eastern Europeans in the Heart of Divided Europe, 1945-1952)

2018  - 2021

University of Manchester

Research Associate on the project Reckoning with Refugeedom. Refugee Voices in Modern History


2014  - 2018

PhD in History, University of Manchester, UK

Awards and Funding

2023 Research Grant of the German Historical Institute in Rome

(For archival research in the Vatican Apostolic Archive)

2023 Visiting Fellow, ERC Project "Global Resettlement Regimes: Ambivalent Lessons learned from the Postwar (1945-1951)", University of Vienna

2021 Royal Historical Society ECR Fellowship Grant

2020 BASEES Postgraduate Prize for the Best Article - ‘A Gloomy Carnival of Freedom. Sex, Gender and Emotions Among Polish Displaced Persons in the Aftermath of World War II’, Aspasia, 3, 2019, 113-134.

2020 ASEEES Travel Grant

2017 artsmethods@manchester Grant

For the ‘Critical Perspective in Polish Studies’ workshop

2017 Royal Historical Society Travel Grant

2014 – 2017 Economic and Social Research Council Award (PhD funding)

2010 and 2011 Scholarship from the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education

Other professional experience

Peer reviewer for Cold War History, European History Quarterly, Journal of Refugee Studies, Routledge, Migration Studies, Helsinki University Press, Manchester University Press

Grant proposal reviewer for the National Science Center, Poland

Co-founder and co-convener of the Polish Studies Group of the British Association of Slavonic and East European Studies

Polish History Consultant for Visualising Forced Migration

Early Career Member of the Royal Historical Society (elected in 2020)

Member of the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies and the British Association for Slavonic & East European Studies

Public Outreach

Workshop facilitator at the event Narrating Experiences of Displacement as a part of the Long Night of Research/Lange Nacht der Forschung (a city-wide research night for the general public in Vienna)

Interview and collaboration with the Imperial War Museum in London for the exhibition Refugees: Forced to Flee

Collaboration with the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester for Journeys Festival International

Collaboration with the Art Reach organisation and emerging artists of refugee background in production of videos, an art exhibition, and a performance piece

Blog post “Reckoning with Refugeedom” for Social History (co-authored with Peter Gatrell)

Reckoning by Akeim Toussaint Buck. Weaving together contemporary lyrical dance, archive, animation and storytelling, Reckoning was created from the Reckoning with Refugeedom archives which tell the stories of generations of displaced people in their own words.

‘Somewhere to Stay’, Diana Forster 2022 (image credits: Neil Hanna). Part of the project Visualising Forced Displacement. Take a virtual tour of Diana's exhibition here